Tertiary institutions pump a billion dollars into the Dunedin economy

Otago University contributes $888m into the Dunedin economy.

Otago University contributes $888m into the Dunedin economy.

The University of Otago's Dunedin campus pumps $881.1 million and Otago Polytechnic $135m into the Dunedin economy.

Both tertiary institutions have released 2015 economic impact reports showing their contribution to the Dunedin and national economy.

The university's Dunedin campus has around 93 per cent of students and 88 per cent of staff, with the university also having campuses in Dunedin, Christchurch, Wellington and Invercargill.

The report noted the university was one of the 50 largest employers in the country and one of the largest in the South Island.

The university's campuses in Christchurch and Wellington each contributed $51.9m and $50.5m to their respective economies, while Invercargill contributed $2.4m.

In Dunedin, about 85 per cent of students came from outside the city, 75 per cent from beyond Otago and Southland, including 41 per cent from the North Island, and a further 15 per cent from overseas.

Otago Polytechnic also released its latest economic impact report revealing a total expenditure of $255m in the Otago region in 2015, with its global economic impact in the same year valued at $289m.

In Dunedin, the $135m of total value added makes up around 2.3 per cent of the city's $5.8 billion gross domestic product.

In 2015, Otago Polytechnic had the equivalent of 4333 full-time students (more than 7200 students by headcount) – up  1.5 per cent on 2014.

Approximately 57 per cent of Otago Polytechnic students come from outside Otago: 32 per cent from the North Island; 14 per cent from overseas; and the remaining 11 per cent from elsewhere in the South Island.

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